The Dominance of Evangelicalism: The Age of Spurgeon and Moody, By David W. Bebbington
The Dominance of Evangelicalism
  • Length: 288 pages
  • Dimensions: 6 × 9 in
  • Published: October 07, 2005
  • Imprint: IVP Academic
  • Item Code: 2583
  • ISBN: 9780830825837

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Preaching magazine's Year's Best Book for Preachers

The word evangelical is widely used and widely misunderstood. Where did evangelicals come from? How did their influence become so widespread throughout the world?

This book continues a compelling series of books charting the course of English-speaking evangelicalism over the last three hundred years. Evangelical culture at the end of the nineteenth century is set against the backdrop of imperial maneuverings in Great Britain and populist uprisings in the United States. Meanwhile, the industrialized West begins to enjoy the fruits of the Industrial Revolution, as British and American commerce become unstoppable forces on economies worldwide.

The rising tide of respectability that accompanied the affluence of the late nineteenth century West exercised great influence over religion. The plight of those who shared little in the abundance of the period likewise stirred the Christian conscience of some, turning them ultimately toward a social gospel. Better communication, together with widespread education, meant that the latest news and novel ideas spread rapidly. Evangelicals knew what was happening among their fellow believers on the other side of the globe and were often swayed by their opinions or inspired by their schemes. Already during the later nineteenth century, evangelicalism was contributing in a major way to globalization.

Theology, hymnody, gender, warfare, politics and science are all taken into consideration in this sweeping discussion of a critical period in religious history, but the focus of The Dominance of Evangelicalism is on the landmark individuals, events and organizations that shaped the story of a high-water mark of this vibrant Christian movement.

The Dominance of Evangelicalism is meticulously well researched. Bebbington has shown himself to be an extraordinary scholar, not only of modern evangelicalism, but also of historical evangelicalism and the development of its theological thought.

Pneuma Review, Summer 2007

"In this new study, Bebbington reveals the extraordinary influence of 19th-century evangelicalism. His striking conclusion is . . . Evangelicals rule! The secret to evangelicalism's success lies in its distinctives."

Timothy Larsen, Christianity Today, June 2006


1. The Evangelicals of the World
2. Varieties of Evangelicalism
3. The Practice of Faith
4. The Legacy of the Enlightenment
5. The Permeation of Romanticism
6. Conservative Theological Trends
7. Evangelicals and Society
8. The Dominance of Evangelicalism
Select Bibliography


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David W. Bebbington

David W. Bebbington (PhD, University of Cambridge) is professor of history at the University of Stirling in Scotland and a fellow of the Royal Historical Society. His principal research interests are in the history of politics, religion, and society in Britain from the eighteenth to the twentieth century and in the history of the global evangelical movement.

His recent books include Evangelicalism in Modern Britain: A History from the 1730s to the 1980s, Victorian Nonconformity, William Ewart Gladstone: Faith and Politics in Victorian Britain, and Holiness in Nineteenth-Century England. He has edited The Baptists in Scotland, Evangelicalism: Comparative Studies of Popular Protestantism in North America, the British Isles and Beyond, 1700-1990, Gladstone Centenary Essays, The Gospel in the World: International Baptists Studies, and Modern Christianity and Cultural Aspirations.